SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazilian prosecutors are investigating reports that gold prospectors may have killed members of a so-called uncontacted tribe in the Amazon.
Brazil’s National Indian Foundation asked prosecutors to look into the matter after prospectors were heard discussing an attack on indigenous people who live in the Javari Valley near the border with Peru. The foundation said in a statement Monday that some prospectors have been detained for questioning, but they have not confirmed any deaths.
Federal prosecutors confirm that they have opened an investigation, but haven’t given any details.
Survival International says the area is home to more uncontacted tribes than anywhere else on Earth. Isolated peoples are particularly vulnerable and indigenous groups in Brazil in general have complained that their way of life is increasingly under threat from land conflicts.